5/02/2006

On Happiness

I'm sure you've wondered, heck, we all have, what makes for a happy life. You don't have to be a philosopher. You don't need to be a psychologist, therapist, or Dr. Phil. Everybody contemplates the way to happiness. Everybody has a strategy for attaining it. I've spent countless hours wondering. I think happiness is a recipe. And like any recipe, Happiness calls for certain ingredients. Here's my latest attempt at the ingredients to cook up some happiness:

An undemanding work environment.

Work sucks. I don't care what you do for a living. You wouldn't do it unless they paid you. It stands to reason that the less demanding the work environment, the less suck-titude. Jeans instead of slacks, part-time instead of full-time; the honor system instead of time-clocks, and preferably no random testing for illicit substances. I like a nice, subjective boss, too, who plays favorites. Let's face it, people. It's easier to play golf and drink with the boss for his/her consideration than to work for it. And if you're the opposite sex, a little tight clothing is much easier to wear than the chains of overtime, dedication and a commitment to excellence.

Regarding the workplace, I'm a firm believer in hourly wages. You can either get paid for the work you accomplish -- or the time you spend at the office. I log in a lot more time than productivity. If I got paid by the tasks I completed, I'd be sucking cock for rent money! But hourly, I do all right. Make sure you're getting paid for hanging out, not accomplishing something worthwhile. I know several workaday folks who get paid to blog from work! How's that for happiness?

A nothing-to-lose disposition

Some hippie chick whose name I forget once sang, “Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose.” That's one astute hippie. First, consider houses. Our big, fancy house on the hill becomes a muse for the bank holding the note, the weed and bug guy, the cleaning lady (viva La Raza!), the taxman and your future ex-spouse who'll get it in the divorce, anyway. Meanwhile, you spend all your time hustling to make the mortgage and keeping the HOA off your back (Who cares if my garbage can is out after 1PM? Your wife was out past 1AM, Dale. Maybe you should keep an eye on her and forget about how tall my weeds are!) Anyway, you need a house or apartment that you don't worry about losing -- something you're almost happy to walk away from. A rat-hole apartment downtown, a single-wide mobile home, a spare bedroom at David Hasselhoff's place -- any of these will do. These places offer you peace of mind, which is what you're after when you're at home anyway. The house doesn't comfort you. It's the stuff in the house -- the sofa, the TV with cable, the fridge, the computer. You can fit these things anywhere. Hell, I'd live in a U-Haul if I could somehow skirt the zoning laws.

Like fancy houses, nice cars, too, are useless possessions. Here's a free tip: you have to wash nice cars, otherwise they don't look nice. I can barely muster the ambition to floss. I'm supposed to Armor-All the tires every week? They're tires, people. Do you wax the soles of your shoes? And don't think a cool car gets you laid. The few guys I knew who were knee-deep in cooter couldn't afford cars at all. The girls drove them around town! These guys had time to romance the ladies while I was at work like a schmuck.

You need a car. But you need a car that you don't have to worry about. Life is full of dust, pot holes, runaway shopping carts, bird droppings, hail storms and vandals looking for cars with a “W” bumper sticker. So drive a piece of crap. Again, you want something you're not afraid to lose. I almost hope somebody steals my car when I'm not looking. In fact, I leave a note on my steering wheel: “Dear Senor, por favor ayuda yourselfo to mi carro. Mi insurance agente will dame mucho dinero por el carro, y tu puede get muchos pollos y cervesas once you make it across el border de Mexico. Your Amigo, LBB.”

Adequate rest and a good night's sleep.

Everything sucks if you're tired. You can be at Disneyland, chock-full of ecstacy pills, riding Space Mountain while sucking Cristal out of a chocolate replica of Anna Nicole Smith's hooters. If you didn't get enough sleep the night before, you'll still be cranky and irritable. A couple of times a week, I don't get my full 9 hours of sleep. I'm 37 times more likely to commit a violent felony on these days. For example, once when I was tired I kicked an old lady in the stomach for asking me directions to Luby's cafeteria. What's more, I sprained my ankle on her wheelchair. As if I needed another reason to dislike old people -- or the handicapped. Anyway, get enough sleep or the following day is useless.

Several big meals every day

You don't want to go hungry. If you're hungry, you can't think about anything else. That one scientist, Maslow, proved it when he trained a salivating dog to run into traffic when Maslow rung a bell, and the dog usually got squished by a car. What a sadistic bastard Maslow was, now that I think about it. Anyway, when you're hungry and you're at work, for example, your workday becomes a covert operation to score a meal. One time I had this report due, but I was hungry. Plus I hadn't slept well the night before. I noticed a workmate, Joyce from two cubicals down, had a Pay Day bar on her desk. So instead of finishing my report, I made a phone call to to Joyce and explained that we had her father down at the morgue and could she please come and identify the body. She fell for it. Once she left I executed a recon mission and grabbed the Pay Day. Plus I got to hurt Joyce's feelings and make her use some doc-time for nothing. Two birds, one stone. The point is, none of this would have happened if I'd eaten breakfast, except maybe that crank call I made to Joyce. That bitch had it coming for ratting me out on the “Xerox incident.”

Here are some other things you'll need for happiness:

  • A really cool digital watch that does a lot of cool shit, like a Casio G-Shock
  • A nearby Circle K with a functional soda fountain
  • Liquor
  • A subscription to NetFlix
  • A punching bag, a medicine ball and your favorite fitness equipment
  • A great salsa recipe
  • A spouse whom you don't want to strike every time you hear his/her voice
  • A blog, broadband Internet and some like-minded bloggers
  • The knowledge that life is temporary, that death is permanent, and that once you die you cease to exist, therefore no God can seek retribution on you.

62 comments:

Peter said...

Yeah Bug, that should work!!

Dave Morris said...

A fine recipe, indeed. On the "other things you'll need" part of the list, you could have left off the spouse part entirely.

Me? Bitter?

Stacy The Peanut Queen said...

So you saw me at Disney, huh? ;)

Shamus O'Drunkahan said...

I like the cut of your jib, sir.

And don't believe people who say, money can't buy you happiness.

Because it can. And all the cool-whip you can eat.

Weary Hag said...

I don't know LBB. I think this whole happiness thing has been way overrated.

I for one have gotten further in life and with far greater satisfaction being the miserable bitch of a hag that I am.

Plus it only took me about twenty years to hone these skills whereas most people spend an entire lifetime never quite getting "happiness" right.

tornwordo said...

You sound very happy.

I always thought it was better to get paid by the job, not the hour. By the hour, I'm trapped, by the job, I can hurry up and get it done faster *and half asseder.

Bennet said...

here's an old fav..

Confusous Says:" He who stands on toilet, is high on pot."

I agree with everything here...Don't have a Casio watch though...Very funny LBB

NWJR said...

The more you own, the more it owns you.

Good stuff, as usual.

Blogarita said...

If a QT counts for the Circle K, then all I need is the G-Shock to be a very happy woman.

Great post!

Painter Beach Girl said...

Happiness is a choice, obviously. Even if it is hard to figure out how to choose it and maintain it!!!!!!!!

LaunderLust said...

Happiness = Brokeback Mountain

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Very nice! I found a place where you can
make some nice extra cash secret shopping. Just go to the site below
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Pittchick said...

Good things to keep in mind!

Anonymous said...

Very nice! I found a place where you can
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"AG" said...

I want to hire you as my happiness coach.

Lil Bit said...

Just to expound a lil bit...

~ How 'bout a job you actually enjoy?

~ You can't remember Janis Joplin's name? Get the fuck outta here w/that kinda talk! You better be jokin'! LOL

~ A good night's sleep? Great. I'm an insomniac, so I guess I'm just fucked there. LOL

~ Big meals every day? Er... naw, we don't wanna be hungry, but we don't wanna be the size of a frikkin' HOUSE either!

Liked your extra things list...
But y'know?
Happiness is over-rated anyways.
Cool post, tho. ;)

""Nobody got anywhere in the world by simply being content."
-Louis L'Amour

flea said...

found your link thru another link (think it was stringman's) and this is good shit mate!

dead on and i should be taking notes i guess.....

Molicious said...

Heh, I actually have all of those. Am I spoiled or what? :o)

BTW, "Viva La Raza"? lol

George Larson said...

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Spinning Girl said...

I hear Luby's onion blossom is out of this world.

ME said...

I don't have a G shock, or anything similar...or a spouse at all...but I am living proof that even if closely followed, this recipe is quite tasty! No, wait, what I mean is...this recipe spells success!!

Arthur Quiller Couch said...

Two points.

First, about work. "If you can do what you want to do, you'll never work another day in your life". (There can be very few job openings for international bikini raters, but what the hell, we can hope)

Second, that warn't no hippie chick, that was Janis Joplin singing "Me and Bobby McGee" and I know you know that but I Did Not Get The Joke!

Maslow? He was an economist. So are you from Chicago?

StringMan said...

That is, I think, a sure-fire recipe, Bug. You are a Master Chef. And a witty mutha, as usual ...

Detroiter said...

And all this time I thought I had to be good or God was gonna get me.

Now, nothing stands in the way of my desire to bash Barney's head in and go a few rounds with the Wiggles. Thanks, Lightning, I feel happier already.

blah said...

awwww Luby's.....

Miss Sassy said...

Where's the sex???
Um, I mean, do hobbies besides blogging make the list?

And your infering that a spouse need only not make my ears bleed to foster an ingredient to happiness?? Who says you shouldn't lower your standards!!

Latigo Flint said...

You know, making some extra cash secret shopping actually sounds good... really good... like so good it might actually make me happy type good. I'm just sayin' is all.

(You are spectacular LBB, by the way.)

phlegmfatale said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
phlegmfatale said...

Boy, you said it!

Especially Viva los Part Time Job and getting plenty of sleep. If I don't get my full 12, boy she be one cranky-assed bitch, and look out, world.

You obviously are a good cook!

Carrie said...

Janis Joplin.

happiness is as happiness does....like Forest Gump.

Theresa said...

I usually don't read the long posts. I lose interest way too soon. But yours is different, somehow...I can't quite figure it out...hmm...

Edgy Mama said...

I'm all about sleep and blog buddies and food. You forgot to mention SEX, though.

Elaine said...

"A blog, broadband Internet and some like-minded bloggers"

So true.

I think I might print out this list! Loved it!

PBS said...

You have happiness done and figured out. I think you should write a book and make millions. That should make you even happier!

NeverEnough said...

Amen!! Best post yet...

NYCbeauty said...

Wow. I guess you've got it all. I would add privacy to the list. I think New York is doing me in, man.

As always... Rachael said...

I'm happpy to settle for liquor a spouse I love... except that all the drinking and sex menas I NEVER get enough sleep. Oh well, at least I'm not hungry, horny, or sober!

It's Me, Maven... said...

How about:

Happiness is a fully functioning and continent sphincter.

kari said...

LBB~Once again, profound. You are great in your 'profoundness'. I bow to your great 'profounditity'. I'm makin' my own anti-dictionary.

Hale McKay said...

Now that's what I call a great menu for success as well as happiness. Well done!
...Like Therese, I usualy "skim" long blogs, but this one held me captive until I finished. Once again, well done!
...Thanks for your too kind comments over at my place.

Phain said...

"I can barely muster the ambition to floss."

I just laughed so hard I think I peed a little... HARHARHARHARHAR!!!

nongirlfriend said...

I'm happy with a few Min Pins, some Smirnoff, a boyfriend that doesn't try to kill me for being me and the fact that I no longer work for Satan's daughter.

How's that?

Smug said...

"And don't think a cool car gets you laid."

I beg to differ, Bug Butt. A friend of mine did an expose on this very subject. His conclusion: A nice car can get a dork laid--under the right circumstances.

But given your ostensible affection for the Golden Girls and Three's Company, I'll give you a pass on the car thing.

Miranda said...

Lol...so true everything sucks when you're tired.

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Frap Gurl said...

A subscription to NetFlix... How true!

Liquor or Nyquil!...

Broadband...the only way!!!!!!!!

nongirlfriend said...

Email me for new blog. I think I may be shutting down nongf.

Timmy said...

netflix is great.

you would make a great life coach!

SugarHigh said...

i couldn't agree with you more, especially about that work stuff, and even more so because of the joplin reference. Gotta love Bobby McGee whether you're a hippie or not. :)

keda said...

shit! i gotta get an office job and stop stoking young dancers for an hourly living. b ummer, but it'll buy me more shoes you're right!

as for the car thing.... i'm so with you on flossing.

i will be teaching this list to my offspring.

Tammy said...

Fantastic recipe. One thing left out though. Naps. Lots of naps. I love naps.

BTW - your comment on my post cracked my shit right up.

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NeverEnough said...

Hey I had to add you to my bloglist.

Sam said...

Add some Xanax and I'll agree with you wholeheartedly.

Oh, and sex? That's good too.

exile said...

hmmmm... you know, if one were to read this, then simply liquidate all of yoru assetes and invest the money into the correct mutual funds, this would be very "do-able"

i mean, the rent on a double wide, cable/internet, cellphone, and food... that cant' add up to that much a month. if your investment earns you a constant yield then you're pretty much set.

exile said...

fuck, i overcomplicated...

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